Yes, that’s right! Another investigation.
It’s almost as if this has become a annual event. First; it was the safeguard investigation on Set Screws in 2018, then Threaded Rods and Nuts in 2019 – which is not yet finished.
Now a new safeguard investigation has been initiated on bolts with Hexagon Head Bolts. All these investigations have been lodged by the South African Iron and Steel Institute, on behalf of the South African Fasteners Manufactures Association. SAFMA members are CBC fasteners, Transvaal Pressed Nuts Bolts and Rivets, SA Bolt Manufactures Company and Impala Bolt and Nut.
On 15 May 2020, ITAC initiated and investigation for remedial action in the form of a safeguard against the increased imports of bolts with hexagon heads of iron or steel imported under tariff subheading 7318.15.43. ITAC accepts that the application (SAISI) submitted prima facie information to indicate that:
- Events cited can be regarded as unforeseen developments that led to the surge or increase in volumes of imports.
- SACU industry is suffering a server injury which could be casually linked to the surge in the volumes of imports of the subject product
The investigation period to determine the allegation of serious injury is 1 July 2015 to 30 June 2019. The initial assessment of import statistics shows that there has been a 34% increase in imports over the investigation period. This is the surge referred to in the application, however; imports declined by 4% between 2018 and 2019.
If the safeguard duty is approved, it will be imposed on top of the already high 30% standard duty. The initiation gazette does not indicate the requested duty position, but will no doubt be very large indeed.
Interested parties have until 4 June 2020 respond and oppose this absurd increase within the fastener industry.